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Fuel door lock - sticky cable fix

Hello Pelicans,

I finally get to contribute something. You have all been extremely generous with me, sharing your thoughts and knowledge. I was reading the "long term and commonly neglected maintenance" thread and decided to do something about my sticky fuel door filler on my 1985 Carrera.

I squirted lubricant on the spring and got it moving easily, but the cable was still getting stuck and not moving well. There is a cap with a hole in the center that keeps water from going into the vehicle cabin, that was also preventing the lubricant from getting in the tube that holds the cable.

Then I made a HUMONGOUS mistake. I took the cotter pin out of the fuel door release catch, and released the spring.



Then I made another big mistake: I tried to loosen the screw that holds the cable without gripping it first with a needle nose pliers. The cable snapped off where the screw had been biting into it.



I pulled the cable release lever in the cabin all the way out and discovered the cable was rusty and brittle. I used a fine grit sand paper to make it smooth again and greased it. (It will have to hold the door closed until I buy a new one VERY soon).

I could not figure out how to get that spring back in to save my life. It was another German surprise! I struggled for about an hour before coming to the computer to ask you for help. But there was only one thread that mentioned this spring, and there was no photo to show the proper orientation.



I realized that I had to get pressure on the spring to get it back in place. The other thread mentioned sticking a screw driver in the hole and pushing upward, but I could not get it. Another hour of struggling goes by then finally I have the " A Hah!" moment. What if I wrap a plastic wire tie through the center of the spring and pull through the release plate to create the tension while lining up the holes to get the cotter pin back in? Eureka! Ten minutes later the fuel door release plate is back in and springing to and fro like it was engineered to.



I am posting this because someday, someone will need to know this and it will be waiting to help. I wish that I had known in advance what I was getting into. So here goes:

The sticky fuel door cable fix:

1. Open fuel door
2. Remove rubber gasoline bib, clean and put aside
3. Grip brass cable holder with needle nose plier and turn flathead screw to release cable.
4. Pull the fuel door release knob all the way out with cable.
5. Sand down rusty cable with fine grit sandpaper
6. Lubricate cable and insert it back into the dashboard
7. Slide brass cable holder back on at fuel filler door release plate and tighten screw making sure to hold the brass housing with needle nose pliers.
8. Adjust if needed.
9. Replace clean fuel bib

Last edited by JeffreyNMemphis; 03-26-2007 at 07:34 PM..
Old 03-26-2007, 07:26 PM
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Old 03-26-2007, 07:47 PM
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Jeffrey,

I appreciate your explaination and pictures. I do not need this fix at the moment, but it will come in handy in the future.

-Matt
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Old 03-26-2007, 09:27 PM
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Pelican parts sells the fuel release door cable...
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Old 03-27-2007, 05:13 AM
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I still wonder why Porsche sourced that fuel door spring from Peterbilt.

Brian
Old 03-27-2007, 05:37 AM
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Great, Jeff. I remember this subject coming up awhile ago, and it sure seemed to me that there had to be a simple and straight forward way to get that spring in, just as would be done on the factory floor. I just didn't know what that simple method was. Now I do. Thanks!
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Old 03-27-2007, 05:45 AM
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this reminds me of 'pelican of yore'... thanks. good post.
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Old 03-27-2007, 09:40 AM
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Re: Fuel door lock - sticky cable fix

Quote:
Originally posted by JeffreyNMemphis
The other thread mentioned sticking a screw driver in the hole and pushing upward, but I could not get it. Another hour of struggling goes by then finally I have the " A Hah!" moment. What if I wrap a plastic wire tie through the center of the spring and pull through the release plate to create the tension while lining up the holes to get the cotter pin back in? Eureka! Ten minutes later the fuel door release plate is back in and springing to and fro like it was engineered to.
That is an ingenious trick, but unfortunately, on the very early cars, there is no hole in the swivel plate/latch through which to thread the tie-wrap. It would require drilling a hole in the plate first, or buying a replacement, updated part, which still might be easier in the end than other solutions.

From my '67S:


From my '68:


My '73 does have the hole in that part, so this change was implemented at some point in the B series cars, apparently.

TT
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Old 04-03-2007, 08:40 AM
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picture pre-1973

Hi Tom,

Thanks for contributing your pre-1973 photos. I added a photoshop caption.

It is best not to pull that cotter pin, unless you absolutely have to. I installed a new cable without pulling the pin, and releasing that spring. Unfortunately, the first time I didn't know what a PITA that spring was going to be. I wish I knew the trick for getting it back in a lot sooner. I wrestled with that spring for hours.

Old 04-03-2007, 12:30 PM
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Hi what is the part number for the latch spring?

regards mike
Old 04-12-2007, 07:02 AM
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The part number for the latch spring is 91150433100
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Old 04-12-2007, 02:56 PM
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HI thanks for that.

regards mike
Old 04-13-2007, 06:21 AM
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Re: picture pre-1973

Quote:
Originally posted by JeffreyNMemphis
I wrestled with that spring for hours.
I not only wrestled with mine for hours, but ended up "twanging" the compressed spring out of the needle-nose vicegrip pliers I was using to try to insert it clear across the garage into a pile of junk and didn't find it for 6 months! It flew so far, so fast, I could not even tell where it had gone. I ended up using a non-oem replacement spring I had on hand that did not have enough pressure to return the latch properly, and to this day I have to push the knob in after I release the latch in order to return it fully.

One of these days I will replace it with the original, now that I have found it (during a garage cleanup).

TT
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Old 04-14-2007, 09:13 AM
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Hi Tom,

Use my spring trick and it will go in easy! Don't have to dread pulling that cotter pin.
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Old 04-14-2007, 05:16 PM
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Great post,
Mine just came loose, so I pulled the cotter pin and couldnt figure out how to get the spring back in the right spot.
Thanks!!

Rich
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Old 05-04-2008, 04:19 PM
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Jeffery, thank you for your excellent contribution. Regards, Freddie
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Old 09-11-2008, 02:59 PM
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Jeffrey, question on your gas door lever install. Does the cotter pin slide through the spring? Thanks
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Old 03-12-2009, 07:34 PM
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Yes, the pin goes through the center of the spring shown in photo above. The difficulty is getting the center of the spring to line up with the lever. The plastic wire tie maneuver makes it possible to position the spring and lever together at the same time, then pulling the wire tie puts tension on the spring while holding the lever in place till the holes line up to insert the pin. You have two moving parts (one being a spring that could kill a rat) and a stationary hole requires some juggling. The strength of the spring makes it nearly impossible to compress in that tiny spot without some kind of tool. I have the greatest respect and admiration for Porsche's engineering, I could not have imagined how to design that device, I barely figured out how to put it back together, and only then because I got a clue from this website.

Best of luck and please tell us if this thread was helpful, or not. Your insight and experience will help the next person. I thank God for the Pelicans who were here when I needed help! Thanks again to Wayne and the Pelican Parts family for hosting the forum.
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Old 03-12-2009, 09:52 PM
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Jeffrey, thanks again for this excellent post. I tried for 1/2 hour to put this lever in when I stopped knowing well that there must be a trick. Funny how things are....I can tear down and assemble a Porsche engine and car but this little rusted out spring turned me upside down. Thanks, Freddie
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Old 03-12-2009, 10:03 PM
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One more thought... My hyroglyphic attempt at using photographs and scribble are probably not communicating one important bit of information: The photo does show the correct orientation/relationship between the lever, spring and housing. What I tried to express with the arrows is that the top of the spring is designed to be held against the underside-top of the housing while the bottom is designed to press against the lever. My arrows do show where the spring will contact the housing at top and lever at bottom. What the photo does not show is the arching direction of compression created by pulling the spring center forward with the top and bottom of the spring correctly oriented. I am going to edit my arrows and post again...
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Old 03-12-2009, 10:17 PM
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